Today Is The First Day Of The Rest Of Your Life
1. Smile like you mean it.
Knowing that today is the first day of all your tomorrows, you’re presented, in a sense, two options: a smile or a frown. Which way will you be motivated?
A frown is a form of resistance toward the day, but a smile welcomes it with affirmation. A smile agrees with the day ahead, that there will be something very worthwhile.
Caught in between a smile and a frown? Maybe you’re on the fence, torn, in a quandary, wavering. You may lack sufficient motivation to launch the day. Given that most days we fail to stop and think about where on our timeline we are, there is no urgency to live each day purposefully. Too often it is easier to let chance dictate how a day will turn out.
Purposeful Living Is Marked By Motivation
There are not any guarantees for our tomorrows. You and I don’t know how many days constitute the rest of life. Embracing the day ahead with a desire to live it to the fullest is a decision. We choose to resist the day or we choose to welcome it.
This is the day that the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it. – Psalm 118:24
Look in the mirror and smile just because a smile adds value to your face. It’s been said that the best accessory a woman can wear is her smile. I think that goes for a man, too.
Are you happy today? Then notify your face! Make a smile your signature accessory and watch how many people you’ll motivate to smile back. It may very well be the only smile they will get today. Be generous, dish them out. They’re free.
2. Pursue the challenge of the day like the outcome depends on it.
I Would But He Wouldn’t
This is an excerpt from an English Fairy Tale entitled The Old Woman and Her Pig (London: David Nutt, 1890), and my mother read it to me when I was a child:
An old woman was sweeping her house, and she found a little crooked sixpence. “What,” said she, “shall I do with this little sixpence? I will go to market, and buy a little pig.”
As she was coming home, she came to a stile. But the piggy wouldn’t go over the stile.
She went a little further, and she met a dog. So she said to him, “Dog! Dog! Bite pig. Piggy won’t go over the stile; and I shan’t get home tonight.” But the dog wouldn’t.
She went a little further, and she met a stick. So she said, “Stick! Stick! Beat dog! Dog won’t bite pig; piggy won’t get over the stile; and I shan’t get home tonight.” But the stick wouldn’t.
The Spell Was Broken
Eventually, the old woman met a cat and several other uncooperative subjects. You get the idea: she was not having a great day.
The obstinate characters increased, ad nauseam, until somewhere down the line a cooperative one stepped up to the challenge and changed the course of events. The tale continues (and I’ve left out a chunk of it):
As soon as the ox began to drink the water; the water began to quench the fire; the fire began to burn the stick; the stick began to beat the dog; the dog began to bite the pig; the little pig in a fright jumped over the stile; and so the old woman got home that night.
Personally, I despised that story, probably because it involved beating a dog with a stick. But the moral seems to point to the reality that life throws down challenges. Often we need to be the one cooperative link in a chain of obstinate links. Purpose to keep a good day on track with a cooperative attitude and watch how contagious you are.
3. Tackle an accomplishment like your joy requires it.
Hardest Thing First
Being overwhelmed is the master of defeat. “It can’t be done,” is another of those ugly lies that robs us of contentment and the sense of accomplishment that goes with it. Choose a day this week to meet head-on one of those small mountains of impossibility. Let yourself go over the top.
Take Care Of Today And Tomorrow Will Take Care Of Itself. (Matthew 6:34)
Dreading some aspect of the upcoming day? One of the best pieces of advice I can pass on is to always choose to do the hardest task first. By comparison, the rest will seem easy.
Reach Through The Barrier
Try setting a goal that is measurable and doable today—or by the end of the week—and reward yourself with the joy that comes from reaching through the barrier of “it can’t be done” to the triumphant, “I just did it!”
After all, every action starts with an intention. One small victory sparks another, and it doesn’t seem to matter how small the goal. Believe in the power of that intention . . . and be motivated today!